Pugh, Eugene C.
Eugene C. Pugh, 89, of Cedar Rapids, died peacefully Saturday, Dec. 22, 2012, at St. Lukes’ Continuing Care Hospital of respiratory complications. Memorial services will be held at 10:30 a.m. Saturday, Dec. 29, at St. Paul’s United Methodist Church with military rites. The Rev. Harlan Gillespie will officiate. Friends may call at Cedar Memorial Park Funeral Home from 5 to 8 p. m. Friday.
Eugene Clem Pugh was born March 15, 1923, at St. Luke’s Hospital in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, to Sylvia (Clem) and David R. Pugh. He grew up in Cedar Rapids, graduating from McKinley High School in 1941. He served in the U.S. Army 84th Infantry Division (Railsplitters) during World War II in Europe where he was awarded a Purple Heart during the Battle of the Bulge. He was married to Lois Virginia Yeager on June 28, 1948, in Ames Iowa. He earned a Bachelor’s degree in Industrial Education from Iowa State University and a Master’s degree in Industrial Education from the University of Missouri in Columbia, Mo. He taught high school in Story City, Iowa, before his 33 year career as a loss prevention safety engineer at Iowa National Mutual Insurance Company in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. He was well respected in his professional field both locally and nationally.
Survivors include his wife of 64 years, Lois Virginia (Yeager) Pugh; four children, Linda Benson of Burnsville, Minn., Ronald (Charlotte) of Onalaska, Wis., Dana (Scott) Barton of McAlester, Okla. and Mark (Lisa) of Summit Lake, Wis.; 10 grandchildren, Melissa (Adam) Reuvers of Jordan, Minn., Marine Cpl Daniel R. Benson of Cherry Point, N.C., Kevin (Sarah) Pugh of Coralville, Kristin (Olufemi) Coker of Eden Prairie, Minn., Eric (Ellen Christensen) Pugh of Loveland, Colo., Chelsea and Thomas Barton of McAlester, Okla., Corrin (Andrew) McMannes of Monroe, Wis., Elizabeth (Shaun) Bainbridge of New Glarus, Wis. and Katie Pugh of Monroe, Wis.; and eight great-grandchildren, Benjamin Reuvers, Wyatt, Nolan and Eli Pugh, Foluwasade Coker and Connor, Aidan and Brigid McMannes.
He is also survived by his younger brother, Eldon B. Pugh (Margaret) of Cedar Rapids; brother-in-law, Chuck (Glenny) Yeager of Hookerton, N.C.; along with numerous nieces and nephews.
He was preceded in death by his parents; daughter, Lisa Virginia Pugh; brother, David “Warren” Pugh; sisters-in-law, Margaret (Hawkins) Pugh and Marilyn Yeager; and brother-in-law, Dean J. Yeager.
Eugene was a lifelong member of St. Paul’s United Methodist Church and the Family Fellowship Class. He was a charter member of the Tuesday Evening Optimist Club and current member of the Tuesday Noon Optimist Club donating many hours to Christmas tree sales, tutoring at the Boys and Girls club and placing flags around Cedar Rapids on designated holidays. He was active in the Boy Scouts and served as a Safety Merit badge counselor for many years. He played baritone horn with the New Horizons Band until the fall of 2011. He and his wife were members of Congenial 100, a supporter of St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital and involved with the Parent Support Group in Cedar Rapids.
Eugene enjoyed traveling, camping, fishing, crossword puzzles, his workshop, concerts, stage plays and other cultural events. He loved all kinds of music and attended numerous dulcimer camps and Elderhostels in various parts of the United States. He was proud of his Welsh heritage and attended various Gymanfa Ganu’s (Welsh hymn sings) held in the U.S. He was a consummate educator and always learning. He enjoyed time with family, neighbors and friends and had a witty sense of humor.
Memorials may be directed to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, 501 St. Jude Place, Memphis, TN 38105 (attention Lisa Pugh Family Memorial Fund); St. Paul’s United Methodist Church; Boys and Girls Club of Cedar Rapids; or the American Diabetes Association.
Please leave a message or tribute to the Pugh family on the website, www.cedarmemorial.com under obituaries.
Published in The Gazette Dec. 25, 2012.